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1 killed in Arizona skydiving accident during world record attempt

By Brian Skoloff

Associated Press

Published: Thursday, April 3 2014 7:15 p.m. MDT

Members of the World Team join together in a missing man formation during a jump over Eloy, Ariz., Thursday, April 3, 2014, after one of the group died during a jump earlier in the day. The accident occurred as the group tried to set a world record by forming two distinct aerial formations within the same dive earlier Thursday morning. Skydive Arizona blamed the accident on a malfunctioning parachute that was released too low to the ground to allow a reserve parachute to fully open.

Henny Wiggers, Associated Press

ELOY, Ariz. — One person has died in a skydiving accident in Arizona where parachutists were attempting to set a world record.

World Team spokeswoman Gulcin Gilbert said one skydiver died in the accident but had no further details.

The accident occurred Thursday during an attempt to break a world record for what is called a "formation jump."

A group of 220 people from about a dozen countries free-fall from about 18,000 feet, then come together in a formation before separating and doing another formation. They then pull their parachutes.

Skydive Arizona in Eloy has been the site of other skydiving deaths in recent months.

Two skydivers — from Germany and the United Kingdom — died in November as their parachutes collapsed and they fell to their deaths during an attempt to set a jump record.

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